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What Hurricane?

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Posted by:

on August 13, 2004 at 22:35:00

The Tampa Bay area survived another close call, as Hurricane Charley made landfall 100 miles to the south, just north of Ft. Myers.

I do wish the folks to the south "good luck," and hope the damage was not too severe, and that you will all recover in short order.

For the record, the last hurricane to strike or come close to the Tampa Bay area, was Donna, in 1960. It was a category 4 storm, comparable to 1992's Hurricane Andrew.

Donna came ashore just south of Sarasota, and traveled north northeast across the state, before reaching the Atlantic Ocean, and gathering strength over the gulf stream, and bouncing off the Atlantic coast, crossing New England, and finally dissapating off the coast of Newfoundland. Donna was responsible for knocking the steeple off the Old North Church, where William Dawes hung the signal for Paul Revere to make his famous ride.

"One if by land, and two if by sea,
And I on the opposite shore will be,
Ready to ride and spread the alarm
To every middlesex, village, and farm!"

Donna was the only hurricane on record to produce sustained hurricane force winds (74 mph or greater) in Florida, the mid-Atlantic states, and in New England. It did an estimated 500 million dollars worth of damage, and that figure is in 1960 dollars.

As hurricanes go, Donna was relatively long-lived - more than three weeks, and was one of the most destructive hurricanes of the 20th century.


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